Murehwa murder: Police search Ruwa home
by Geraldine Katunga
Daniel Nemukuyu and Grace Chingoma
POLICE yesterday fired three shots in the air to disperse rowdy residents throwing stones at moving vehicles after a failed search for the slain Murehwa boy’s head at his uncle’s house in Damofalls, Ruwa.
Scores of people, mainly Damofalls residents, thronged the street at the house owned by Thanks Makore to witness the search, after three informants told the police that the head was buried at the house.
But police confirmed last night that they had not found the skull or any other body parts during the search, despite rumours on social media.
Police have already recovered the torso, legs and arms of seven-year-old Tapiwa Makore, murdered in a suspected ritual killing in Murehwa last month.
The majority of the body parts were recovered in the Murehwa area.
Police cordoned off Thanks Makore’s house near Cream Shopping Centre in Ruwa to enable the uninterrupted search.
Thanks Makore, an uncle to the late Tapiwa Makore (Junior), is jointly charged with his twin Tapiwa (Senior) for their nephew’s murder. The pair, together with three other suspects are in remand prison pending the murder trial.
Acting on the information received, detectives yesterday took Thanks Makore from prison for indications at his house.
After a day’s search, scores of people who demanded to see the suspect, protested the police’s decision to “smuggle” him out of the house. When the Nissan Navara ferrying the suspect drove off, some people threw stones, while others attempted to scale the pre-cast wall into the Makore family house, resulting in the police firing warning shots. The residents throwing stones had running battles with the police.
When The Herald left Damofalls, police officers were still protecting the house from the rowdy residents.
The search started around 9am with the police digging in the yard without success.
Journalists were barred from entering the yard, but glimpses through gaps saw the police team digging up a concrete pavement.
While the investigators were busy searching inside, people mainly women were dancing and singing while holding placards.
Some of the placards read “Justice for Tapiwa now”, “Enough is Enough, we want Tapiwa’s head now”.
The rains that poured down in the afternoon could not deter the demonstrators and they continued singing and dancing under umbrellas, while some just braved the rains.
The numbers ballooned late afternoon, calling for the intervention of riot police.
Around 5pm, police brought sniffer dogs to the scene to assist in the search, but without success. The two dogs spent an hour in the yard, but gave no sign that they could smell human remains.
Interviews conducted by The Herald revealed that Thanks Makore and his family threw a party at their Damofalls house on October 21, which coincided with the disappearance of the boy in Murehwa.
“We were surprised because we knew about Tapiwa’s murder and we knew he was the family’s close relative,” said a neighbour. “How could someone celebrate at a time there was family bereavement.
“A big cake was delivered on the day and there were celebrations. We don’t know what the celebration was all about, whether it was a birthday party or just a party.”
Thanks Makore is married with five children. He stayed at the house with his wife, who goes to United Methodist Church and last born son who is at a boarding school doing Advanced Level. There is also a tenant at the house.
Thanks Makore and his wife are reportedly investing in Murehwa and had built a shop which is yet to open.
“They were now spending considerable time in Murehwa where they built the shop,” said another neighbour.